Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Sports Extra

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Sports Extra

Article excerpt

Byline: Compiled by Scott Kendrick, The Times-Union

2 CENTS

You can bet that the power brokers in the pro sports leagues are watching the NHL lockout with heightened interest.

It looks like a slam dunk that the NHL will be the first North American pro league to cancel an entire season. The gulf between the owners and players is as wide as ever.

In baseball, the owners have bungled every labor dispute. That's why the players' association is so powerful. In football, the owners have the upper hand -- and the salary cap that goes with it -- after they "successfully" used replacement players in 1987. The NBA has their cap, too, but theirs appears as more a "partnership" than any of the other sports because their players are paid better than any other.

Let's say the NHL loses its season, then institutes its financial system using replacement players next fall. If hockey's fans come back, it will empower the owners of other sports. They could try the same thing. And while the long-term effect could be a more level playing field, this could be the first blast in a prolonged war between labor and management in the sports world. This is only the beginning.

USC'S NEW TROJAN MAN

Majestic Majerus

Rick Majerus (right) is back as head basketball coach at Southern Cal, and he'll be a welcomed attraction to the world's entertainment capital. The rotund coach, 57, unveiled a new batch of one-liners at his press conference on Wednesday.

-- Clearly aware of Los Angeles' obsession with looking good and being fit, Majerus joked: "I've got to eat where Jennifer Aniston eats. I got to find these salad places."

-- "I'm definitely not going to live in any hotel out here unless Julia Roberts moves into that one hotel and tells me I can be there with her." -- referring to his living in a hotel in Salt Lake City while coach of the Utes.

-- "If they want me to go on the horse and throw the spear, I'll do it. The poor horse might not like it." -- referring to Traveler, USC's equine mascot.

MAJERUS' GREATEST HITS

Majerus has enough material for a stand-up comedy hour:

-- Majerus, a bachelor, to the Arizona Republic in 1998: "Some guys smoke. …

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